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Medina municipal judge race expands


The number of candidates seeking to replace Medina Municipal Judge Dale H. Chase rose to four Wednesday, the deadline to file for the May 2 primary.

Republicans Joe Salzgeber, a Brunswick councilman, and Medina attorney Frederick C. Bougher filed petitions to be on the Republican primary ballot with Brunswick resident Gary F. Werner, of Berns, Ockner and Greenberger in Cleveland, and Medina resident J.R. Russell, of Goldman and Rosen in Akron.

Chase announced earlier this year he will not seek re-election to a six-year term in November. He will have served 30 years when his term ends Dec. 31.

Whoever wins the Republican primary will face Russell in the November nonpartisan race.

Salzgeber, 48, has practiced law since the late 1990s, as a prosecutor and private attorney, defending civil, criminal, traffic and drunken-driving cases.

He said in a statement he has argued numerous cases before the Ohio Supreme Court and in several Ohio Court of Appeals districts.

Salzgeber served as an assistant prosecutor with the Medina County Prosecutor’s Office for seven years (1996-2003) and also as part-time prosecutor for the city of Medina. He was a magistrate for the Brunswick Mayor’s Court from 2007-08 and covered as needed for then-Mayor Dale Strasser.

“I’ve served the public in Medina County and Brunswick for 21 years,” Salzgeber said. “I feel that I could be a further service to people of Brunswick, Medina and other townships in the court jurisdiction as their next judge.”

If Salzgeber is successful in his bid to succeed Chase, he said he would have to resign from his Council seat. He was elected in November 2015 and took office in January 2016.

Russell, 40, serves as part-time prosecutor for the village of Lodi. He said in the statement he has prosecuted and defended civil and criminal cases before a variety of municipal courts throughout Ohio.

Werner, 54, Brunswick’s former mayor, has been a trial attorney for 23 years. He said he practices law in Ohio and California and serves as a magistrate in Brunswick Mayor’s Court.

Bougher could not be reached for comment Wednesday.

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